Tool: Inset Vise
A good tail vise sometimes ends up being an after-thought. When you built your bench, maybe you could only afford to shell out for the face vise, or maybe you thought you wouldn’t use a tail vise very often. If you’re considering adding a tail vise to your bench, this Inset Vise from Veritas is a nice option, at a reasonable price.
The Veritas Inset Vise is different than a typical tail vise, in that it’s only capable of holding stock horizontally. While a tail vise application seems the most obvious, you can mount this vise anywhere you need it. It mounts flush with your bench top.
Mounting requires a stepped mortise; a shallow mortise for the face-plate, and a deeper one to house the vise’s inner workings. You’ll need a top at least 1-1/4″ thick for installation.
The Inset Vise uses a removable aluminum dog. The dog has two steel pegs that pop into one of two sets of holes, spaced 3-7/8″ apart.
The dog has one flat face, and one convex face. The flat face has a 2° inward slope to hold workpieces securely. Also, the flat face has a keyway. This keyway can be used in conjunction with a #10 nut for adding custom shop-made jaws to the dog. A 1-1/2″-wide pivoting jaw is available as an accessory.
A stainless steel toggle-style handle turns the 1/2″ diameter Acme-threaded steel screw, and the jaw travel is 4″.
One drawback is that the dog is 1/2″ tall, making it unusable for thin stock. In this case you’d have to add a shim under your workpiece.